As a small-business owner, you’ve got plenty of expenses: rent, equipment, office supplies and entertaining clients. Although not every one of these costs can be covered with a credit card, you might as well earn rewards on the expenses that can.
If you think that the credit-card market is oversaturated with options, you’re not wrong. This also means it can be difficult to choose the right option for your business.
Chase offers a number of business credit cards geared toward small businesses. The Chase Ink Business Cash credit card makes for a smart selection for business owners who tend to spend the most in specific categories.
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Because the card has no annual fees, it’s also a great way to increase rewards earnings for those who already hold either the Chase Ink Business Preferred credit card or the personal Chase Sapphire Preferred/Reserve cards.
|$500 cash back/50,000-point bonus||Bonus categories have annual limits|
|Great bonus categories||High APR (after the promo period)|
|No annual fee||3% foreign transaction fee|
You will receive $500 as cash back after spending $3,000 on purchases with the Chase Ink Cash within the first three months after opening an account. Because it’s strictly a cashback card, every reward point is worth 1 cent each when redeemed for statement credits.
Practically speaking, this $500 can easily become 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points which are worth $625 or $750 at minimum. We’ll talk a bit more about how you can get more value out of this bonus below.
- 5% cash back at office supply stores and on internet, cable and cell phone bills (on the first $25,000 spent each anniversary year in combined purchases)
- 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants (on the first $25,000 spent each anniversary year in combined purchases)
- 1% back on all other purchases
If your business spending aligns with the bonus rewards categories, you can make out like a bandit by earning between 2% and 5% on those purchases.
Unfortunately, the most profitable rewards are limited to $25,000 on the 5% earnings and another $25,000 on the 2% earnings. Still, by maxing out both bonus spending categories every year, you can earn as much as $1,750 worth of statement credits annually. For a card that charges no fees, that’s a lot of free cash.
The card issuer takes into account your business needs and offers more time to pay off new purchases made with the Chase Ink Cash.
You will have 12 months to pay off balances with 0% APR on purchases within the first 12 months your new card is open. After that, standard rates apply based on your creditworthiness, which are 13.24% – 19.24% variable.
This promotional period gives you time to buy new equipment, furniture or supplies and hopefully generate enough income to zero out your debt by the first year’s end. Having that extra time to pay off your balance can be helpful to a startup business that makes no money at first.
Although the card isn’t the best for international travelers as it charges foreign transaction fees, it offers some travel protections for when you travel domestically.
Every time you rent a car for business purposes and pay for a rental with the Chase Ink Business Cash card, you get primary collision damage waiver coverage. Make sure to decline the rental company’s additional coverage when you pick up the car. If the car is damaged or stolen, you’re covered.
Things happen while traveling. Should you run into issues abroad, reach out to a benefit administrator for medical and legal services, and Chase will be able to help find resources.
Flat tire? Out of gas? Need a jumpstart? For a roadside emergency, call 1-800-847-2869, and the Chase team will send assistance on the road. (Fees apply.)
As mentioned above, the rewards you earn with the Chase Ink Cash have a fixed value of one cent per point. However, there’s a way to increase that value by pairing it with a premium Chase card that earns Ultimate Rewards points. These cards include:
All of these cards earn Ultimate Rewards points that can be transferred to airline and hotel partners. Additionally, if you book travel in the Chase travel portal, your points will be worth 1.5 cents each with the Sapphire Reserve or 1.25 cents each with the Sapphire Preferred and Ink Preferred.
If you have one of these cards and the Chase Ink Cash, you can simply combine your points under the premium card so that you can transfer points or get the increased value in the travel portal.
Whether you should transfer to airlines and hotels or book via the Chase portal will depend on the trip you plan to book.
Just like with any other Ultimate Rewards credit card, you get access to the Shop through Chase portal with the Chase Ink Business Cash card. By making purchases via the designated online shopping portal, you’ll earn bonus cash back and discounts on purchases you already make on the internet.
The bonus rewards post on the next statement and add to your overall rewards balance. It’s a nice way to pad the stash with a few extra clicks. More than 400 online retailers participate in the Shop through Chase offering you no shortage of shopping options.
Once you get a taste of cash rewards, you might be interested in upping your rewards game and earning flexible bank points instead of, or in addition to, the cash back.
The Chase Ink Business Preferred card is designed for business owners who have both time and desire to travel. The card offers the option to transfer points to a number of hotel and airline partners, and its points are worth 1.25 cents each when redeemed through the travel portal.
|Chase Ink Business Cash||Chase Ink Business Preferred|
|Welcome bonus: $500 cash back||Welcome bonus: 100,000 points|
|5% back on internet, cable, phone services and at office supply stores (on the first $25,000); 2% back at restaurants and gas stations (on the first $25,000)||3X on travel, shipping, internet, cable and phone services, and on advertising with social media websites (on the first $150,000)|
|Points are worth 1 cent for travel booked through Ultimate Rewards portal||Points are worth 1.25 cents for travel booked through Ultimate Rewards portal|
|No transfer partners||13 transfer partners|
|Primary rental car insurance when renting for business purposes||Primary rental car insurance when renting for business purposes|
|3% foreign transaction fees||No foreign transaction fees|
|Annual fee: $0||Cell phone insurance|
|Annual fee: $95|
The annual fee on the Chase Ink Business Preferred card is a little higher, but the benefits it provides outweigh it by a lot.
For starters, the welcome bonus that comes with the Chase Ink Business Preferred credit card is significantly higher than the introductory offer on the Chase Ink Cash. It’s also worth more as every point gets a 25% boost when redeemed for travel via the Chase travel portal.
Additionally, points earned with the Chase Ink Business Preferred card can be transferred to Chase’s partner programs. Unfortunately, the rewards earned with the Chase Ink Business Cash card are limited to cash back, which is a disadvantage because it provides less flexibility.
Another perk that is worth noting is the cell phone protection that comes with the Chase Ink Business Preferred card. To receive the benefit, simply pay your cell phone bill with the card, and if it’s damaged or stolen, you can file a claim for up to $600 with a $100 deductible (up to three times per year). The benefit also covers all employees listed on the bill.
Finally, foreign transaction fees of 3% don’t seem like much, but if you travel internationally for business, the fees can add up quickly. The Chase Ink Business Preferred card waives them on all purchases made overseas.
Because the card comes with no fees, it’s an easy question to answer—yes. The welcome bonus alone is worth $500, and the ongoing rewards are rather high for a no-fee card, even though they’re limited. If your business spends heavily on the bonus categories, the card is worth an application. And because you pay nothing to use it, it’s worth keeping it year after year.
The Chase Ink Business Cash credit card is beneficial to small ventures whose expenses fall into the bonus categories but don’t go over the allotted annual rewards limits.
If you have the Sapphire Preferred, Ink Preferred or Sapphire Reserve, it’s a great option for those looking to increase their rewards potential. Not only do you earn more rewards to play with from the get-go, you can also increase their value by having the ability to transfer points to partner airlines, which is an option with any of these other three Ultimate Rewards cards.
Additionally, pairing the Ink Cash with one of these cards will make your points worth more in the Chase travel portal. With the Sapphire Reserve, your points will be worth 1.5 cents each while the points will be worth 1.25 cents each with either the Sapphire Preferred or Ink Preferred.
Playing your cards right and earning more points can mean enhancing the quality of your trips or increasing their frequency. By pairing the Ink Cash with one of the premium Ultimate Rewards cards, you’ll be well on your way to some fun adventures.
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